USLSoccer.com Staff Report
Friday, March 11, 2016
IRVINE, Calif. – Orange County Blues FC and the California State Soccer Association-South (Cal South) have announced a groundbreaking new partnership that will boost all levels of soccer in Orange County.
Featuring player development, coaching education and community outreach initiatives for both organizations, the new partnership will reach out to the more than 200,000 Cal South members across Southern California.
“Orange County Blues FC is thrilled to partner with Cal South who sets the standard of excellence for youth soccer,” said Blues Head Coach and General Manager Oliver Wyss. “This unique partnership will allow us to build on last year's outstanding performance, which saw us become the Western Conference Regular Season Champions. Our goal is to structure the best professional soccer club by incorporating a youth development program that brings together the entire Orange County soccer community.”
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“The newly formed partnership between Orange County Blues FC and Cal South will have a tremendous impact on the development of players and coaches in one of the country’s soccer hotbeds,” said USL Academy Executive Director Gordon Bengtson. “The Blues’ professional organization uniting with the region’s preeminent youth association will significantly advance the production of high quality, future professional players in the area.”
With the partnership, Cal South and the Blues will work to develop soccer programming for players and coaches, at the grassroots levels, through soccer clinics and camps as well as offer game day experiences that will include, high-five lines, parade of champions and play on the field.
“We are excited about the opportunity,” said Cal South Chief Executive Officer Johnnie Garza about the partnership. “It was clear from the beginning there was mutual interest in establishing a meaningful partnership together. We are eager to explore the possibilities now available to us with the OC Blues to further advance the game at this level.”The Blues will kick off the new USL season on Saturday, March 26 when they host Vancouver Whitecaps FC 2 at Anteater Stadium. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. PT.